22nd March 2016

Dear all,

MITRA was formed on 10th July 2014. Still 4 months away from completing 2 years, we have now touched a major mile stone.

Total disbursement of more than Rs.10 lacs towards medical support to financially struggling patients. To be precise, Rs.10,40,000/- which touched the lives of 20 patients.

When we started MITRA,  there were already Government programmes like Karunya, Foundations by big corporates and several other organizations working in this space. How was MITRA going to add more value?

The journey so far and the cases which we handled re-affirmed our conviction that when it comes to illness, there’s nothing called “sufficient”. Whether it is a bone marrow patient who is not covered by any Government scheme, children with heart disease without even having money to travel to the hospital, Foundations of big corporates which involve it’s own red tape and sweet time which the disease will not wait for…. all these proved to us that there are still several gaps to be filled and MITRA has a found a niche space – supporting patients having nil support from elsewhere.

A summary of the cases which we handled so far is given below.

  1. 15 year old boy who needed urgent intestinal surgery and the poor father who was a barber by occupation was running from pillar to post to raise the funds.
  2. 8 year old child whose post operative treatment and rehabilitation   was stopped since the auto driver father could not raise the money.
  3. 3 year old Erb’s palsy patient whose treatment was getting stuck because the family could not source the funds
  4. 20 year old patient who was having Brain TB and Bronchiectasis. The huge cost of treatment was too big for the family to handle.
  5. The 22 year old liver transplant patient whose mother was ready to donate liver but they did not have money to do the same.
  6. The 20 year old boy who has been bedridden since 16 years. The only dream of the father who works as a security staff and the mother is to see their son walk.
  7. 7 year old cerebral palsy patient of a daily wages labourer from Velanthavalam who doesn’t even know that her son can be cured with treatment and also worried that one day’s hospital visit meant starvation for the day since no work and no wages on that day.
  8. 11 month old child who needed heart surgery whose auto driver father went into the police station and asked them to help him to raise money for taking his son to the hospital in Trivandrum.
  9. 14 year old boy who was already bed ridden due to cerebral palsy requiring urgent intestinal surgery. With a paralyzed father, the family was clue less to find the money.
  10. 2 year old heart valve patient whose handicapped father was struggling to make money to take his child to Trivandrum for treatment.
  11. 14 year old orthopedic patient whose deformity by birth needed treatment and the cost was beyond the means of the family.
  12. 65 year old labourer who was suddenly paralyzed and did not even have money to undergo detailed investigations to ascertain the cause of the medical condition.
  13. The 8 year old aplastic aneamia patient which is by far the biggest case handled by MITRA. When we came to know about this case in April 2015, the family was in a state of shock with the realization that they needed around 25-30 lacs to treat their little girl. Though this was way beyond the means of MITRA also, we decided to take it up as a mission and committed to the family to go ahead with the treatment and the money will come. With the help of a lot of people and other similar groups, the child was able to undergo bone marrow transplant. The first transplant failed which needed a second round of treatment. Now after a long struggle she is slowly getting back to normal. A case which showed us that GOD is great.
  14. Supported the surgery of a 13 year old girl who could not walk due to a deformity in legs. The surgery meant that she would lead a normal life which was a dream previously for her parents.
  15. A labourer from Maharashtra who was admitted for urgent deodinal surgery which was life threatening. He did not have any relatives or others who could help him with the money.
  16. A 40 year old cancer patient who had to undergo surgery
  17. A 10 year old cerebral palsy patient who needed surgery for both legs.
  18. 45 year old kidney patient who had found a donor but no money for transplant.
  19. 38 year old aplastic anemia patient who was the sole bread winner of the family.
  20. 45 year old cancer patient who did not have money to travel to the hospital and for undergoing diagnostic procedures.

The last 20 months also taught us to put in systems to make faster decision making, develop a low cost operating model, and instil the values and best practices which will act as guiding lights in the journey ahead.

Milestones are times to take fresh guard and get on with the work at hand with renewed focus. It’s no different for us as we commit to work more and work better.

Will keep you posted regularly.

Till then, good bye and take care.

With Love,